There is no summer like Toronto summer. There, we said it! With the city fully open and festivals back on, this summer is going to be LIT. You might know this by now, the sunny season is starting on a super high note with the whole Gumball 3000 flagdrop. But that’s just the start of it. With a long list of music, dance, food and wine fests happening around town, there’s tons to look forward to.
So, we put together this list of some really cool stuff coming to town this summer. From everything jerk and all-you-can-taste wine to jazz and salsa dancing, here are some exciting TO events. We also threw in ways to take your fun up by several notches. Take a look!
Do West Festival
Toronto’s official start to summer, in the heart of Little Portugal! The iconic festival is back with all the incredible eats and entertainment— extended patios, food trucks, artisan vendors, live music, stage performances, street buskers and a lot more.
Level Up ideas: Do a Portuguese or Brazilian taste test from savoury snacks to coffee shops.
When: June 3rd – 5th
Where: Dundas Street West from Ossington Avenue to Landsdowne Avenue
Indigenous Fashion Arts Festival
This elaborate ode to Indigenous fashion, crafts and textiles is back with four runway shows featuring 25 designers, a Market Place, academic panels and workshops. So, in addition to appreciating Indigenous fashion you can also learn about it. And snag a few covetable pieces for yourself.
Level Up ideas: Sample Indigenous-inspired dishes for lunch at the Pow Wow Cafe.
When: June 9th – 12th
Where: Harbourfront Centre
The Pride month brings along some of the most exciting events to the Six. And this year is no different. Our top picks: Cabana Pool Party on June 15, the Island Party on June 19 and of course, the Pride weekend parade on June 24-26.
Level Up ideas: Visit Toronto’s best drag shows at Church-Wellesley.
When: June (all month)
Where: Yonge Street, Gerrard and Bloor in the Church-Wellesley Village
TD Toronto Jazz Festival
Jazz-lovers, jazz up! The 10-day event celebrating your fave music and musicians is here. And it comes with a performance line-up boasting of impressive names like Smokey Robinson, Gregory Porter, and Michael Kaeschammer.
Level Up ideas: Continue the night with a mystery ‘fiery’ cocktail at The Shameful Tiki Room.
When: June 24th – July 3rd
All you-can-taste-wine festival
Imagine sipping on some of the best wines from around the world? Now, imagine doing it while soaking in the sun at one of the coolest patios in town. That’s the all-you-can-taste wine festival for you. Two days of unlimited sips and unlimited (Rendez)views.
Level Up ideas: Head to FIGO restaurant to find a perfect wine pairing.
When: July 8th – 9th
TD Salsa on St. Clair Street Festival
Gear up for two days of crazy entertainment as Canada’s biggest salsa party is taking over Toronto’s streets. Featuring an international calibre of Latin music, non-stop dancing in the streets and Latin food, the dance fest is just as fun to watch as it is to participate in.
Level Up ideas: Visit Lula Lounge to practise your moves before the festival. Oh, and in case you need a break from all that dancing, head to the Tenoch Mexican restaurant a few blocks from the festival.
When: July 9th – 10th
Where: St.Clair Street – from Winona Dr. to Christie St.
Toronto Caribbean Carnival
OTT costumes, foot-tapping music, delightful eats and the seriously glam Grande Parade— the Caribbean Carnival knows how to set the vibe right. With a million tourists expected in the city during the Caribana weekend, it will likely be one of the most epic events of the summer. FYI: the Grande Parade is scheduled to take place on July 30.
Level Up ideas: Before heading over to Lamport Stadium, grab a light meal at The Mix 669 and enjoy Caribbean street foods fused with Chinese-style dishes.
When: July 28th – 31st
Where: Lamport Stadium / Lakeshore Blvd W, the Exhibition Grounds, and Hotel X Toronto
TD JerkFest Toronto
Keeping the Caribbean flame going, JerkFest Toronto is making a return this year. From the very best of jerk cuisine to killer performances by Canadian and international artists to nights full of music and dance to several family activities, the fest has it all.
Level Up ideas: Hit the Caribbean restaurants with patios around town to soak in the sun
When: Aug 4th – 7th
Taste of the Danforth
One of TO’s biggest street festivals is set to return with performances and fantastic street food. And this one is bringing along the highs and highs of Greek culture. Walk into Toronto’s Greek Town for three days of great grubs and amazing performances and dedicated Kids and Sports zones.
Level Up ideas: Watch a concert at the Danforth Music Hall or try some Persian cuisine at Herby Restaurant
When: Aug 5th – 7th
Where: Greektown – Danforth Avenue
Canadian National Exhibition (CNE)
One of the most thrilling fairs that grace the city every summer is back in all its pre-pandemic grandness. Expect a whole lot of rides, a spectacular shopping experience, an amazing array of mouth-watering carnival treats and plenty more.
Level Up ideas: Grab an elaborate brunch at Liberty Village
When: Aug 19th – Sep 5th
Where: Exhibition Place
Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF)
The Toronto International Film Festival returns for its 47th edition. That is 11 days of celebrating and enjoying the best of international and Canadian cinema. If you need to get your creative bone tickled, this is the fest to be.
Level Up ideas: Pack your weekend with Spa & Shopping at King St West
When: Sep 8th – 18th
Where: TIFF Bell Lightbox
TBH, there’s plenty more where that came from. You can check it all out at Now Playing Toronto for all Toronto updates and create your own summer fest itinerary.
Read more in Things To Do
10 of the best things to do in Toronto this week (May 29-June 2)
The iconic Under Armour Toronto 10K run is back with a good cause, epic party, unique medals & more
30 of the very best things to do in & around Toronto this June
Toronto is getting free live outdoor jazz shows all summer long
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